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scottedelman
07 December 2015 @ 10:38 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I was interviewed last night by someone writing a book about the early days of comics fandom and how it led to the rise of the dedicated comic book shop. As part of that, one of the things I was asked to recount was how and where I used to buy my comics when I was growing up in Brooklyn.

I remembered Joe and Morty’s candy store on Aveue P, in which I was unable to decide whether to buy X-Men #1 or Avengers #1, as I only had 12 cents in my pocket and they’d both come out the same day. But I also remembered an article I wrote years later for my high school newspaper about My Friends bookstore, where I’d been induced by my parents to sell all my comics because they felt I owned too many of them.

In any case, because my interviewer wanted to see the piece, and I went to the trouble of scanning it for him, I figured I’d share it here as well. Basically, this is me looking back on around 1968 from the perspective of 1972.

I certainly hope I’ve become a better writer since then!

ShorelinesMyFriendTheBookstore120572

I don’t know whether you noticed what I just noticed. But I was wrong when I claimed there that selling 300 comic books for $5.00 netted me “exactly three-fifths of a cent per comic.” It was actually 1.667 cents per comic. And it took me more than forty years to notice.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman
06 December 2015 @ 07:36 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

If you attended Sasquan—the 73rd World Science Fiction Convention—in Spokane earlier this year, deciding how to best spend your time was probably tough, for inside the 148-page program book each attendee received were listed 241 panels alone, plus multiple readings, presentations, kaffeeklatsches, and more.

SasquanProgram

Things were quite different in 1974, however, the year 19-year-old me attended his first Worldcon—Discon II, the 32nd World Science Fiction Convention.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I’ve been lucky enough to get to Next—the Chicago restaurant which reinvents itself three times per year—for six of their menus—Sicily, Kyoto, The Hunt, Vegan (twice!), Bocuse d’Or and, most recently, Tapas.

NextRestaurantDiningRoom

With SFWA’s Nebula Awards weekend once more returning to Chicago, I’ve been looking forward to Next’s announcement of its 2016 plans. And now that, minutes ago, they’ve gone public with their three latest offerings, I know what I’ll be having for dinner with several of you.

So here’s what’s in store—Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman
27 November 2015 @ 03:20 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

On February 10, 1974, I was wandering midtown Manhattan when I was approached by a guy who asked me if I’d like to take a free personality test.

I was 17. I hadn’t yet started working for Marvel Comics, hadn’t yet met my wife, hadn’t sold any fiction, or done any of the others things that make me me. And in that moment, I had no idea that this was a opening gambit to get me to agree to learn more about Scientology.

But I was intrigued, and had a few hours to spare, so I figured … what could it hurt?

So I followed the clipboard-carrying street hawker to an office, where I rated 200 statements, indicating whether I agreed, disagreed, or was neutral about them. If you want to know my answers, here they are. Check them out!

AmericanPersonalityAnalysis2

Doesn’t tell you much, does it?Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

While reading Salon’s recent post about the controversy over H. P. Lovecraft and the use of his face on the World Fantasy Award trophy, I was surprised to find that halfway down the piece was … me!

SalonLovecraftTweetQuote

I’d tweeted last week about how once the board announced it was changing to a more inclusive symbol for the trophy, news broke that a different organization was embracing Lovecraft, one which didn’t find his racist views at all problematic …

MyNewLovecraftAwardTweet

… and my “Whoa!” was somehow deemed newsworthy.

I have no problem with that.

In fact, it isn’t even the first time a journalist picked up on one my tweets. Back in 2014, Good Morning America showed one of my tweets on screen during a story about Alinea chef Grant Achatz having to deal with a crying baby.

Which makes this a good time, I suppose, for me to publicly state my position on the matter of the news media sharing my tweets. To repeat:

I have no problem with that.

I consider whatever I say over on Twitter to have been said in a public forum, and that my words there are as ripe for quotation as any statement I might make from a stage in a public venue, as long as no editing’s done to change my meaning and there is proper attribution and linkage.

I know there are others who feel more protective of their tweets, which is their prerogative and something I hope journalists respect. But as for me, if I should accidentally happen to tweet anything which makes enough sense you feel it worth quoting—quote away!

 
 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

What Will Come After, my Stoker Award-nominated collection of zombie short stories which PS Publishing put out in 2010, is currently available only as an ebook, so if you’re the kind of reader who prefers dead trees to pixels, you’re out of luck. Sadly, the hardcover’s been out of print for a few years.

But that’s about to change.

The latest PS Publishing email newsletter, which mentioned my recent zombification on an episode of Z Nation, took me by surprise with an announcement my collection will soon be out in paperback.

PSPublishingNewsletterWhatWillComeAfter

I knew such an edition might be in the offing, but until now, I wasn’t sure.

So for those with an aversion to ebooks … watch out! What Will Come After will be shambling your way soon …

 
 
scottedelman
20 November 2015 @ 10:14 am

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Oliver Willis and Kurt Busiek have been posting some wonderful PSAs which DC Comics ran back in the ’60s and into the ’70s, and I couldn’t resist sharing a few of them here. Based on the current state of our country, they seem to have as much relevance today as they did then.

SupermanRefugeesRead the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman
19 November 2015 @ 10:34 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Since all the cool kids seem to be doing this, I figured—why not me? So here are details on the two stories of mine published in 2015, so you can, if you’re a voting member of certain organizations, nominate them if so moved … but only after you’ve read them and judged them worthy, of course.

First up—

Back in March, my 13,000-word zombie story “Becoming Invisible, Becoming Seen” was published in Dark Discoveries #31.

DarkDiscoveries30

It’s a dark but (hopefully) uplifting horror story of love and obsession, and if you’re a voting member of a group for which that sort of thing seems a good fit, drop me a line, and I’ll be glad to send along a PDF.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

While trying to distract yourself from yesterday’s heartbreak, did you happen to catch last night’s Z Nation? If so, in the Season 2, Episode 10 episode titled “We Were Nowhere Near the Grand Canyon,” you’d have seen one of my favorite writers zombified.

GeorgeRRMartinZNation

No, I don’t mean George R. R. Martin! Besides, that was a couple of episodes ago. I mean this guy.

That’s right—me!

So how’d that happen?Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

While trying to distract yourself from yesterday’s heartbreak, did you happen to catch last night’s Z Nation? If so, in the Season 2, Episode 10 episode titled “We Were Nowhere Near the Grand Canyon,” you’d have seen one of my favorite writers zombified.

GeorgeRRMartinZNation

No, I don’t mean George R. R. Martin! Besides, that was a couple of episodes ago. I mean this guy.

That’s right—me!

So how’d that happen?Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

While trying to distract yourself from yesterday’s heartbreak, did you happen to catch last night’s Z Nation? If so, in the Season 2, Episode 10 episode titled “We Were Nowhere Near the Grand Canyon,” you’d have seen one of my favorite writers zombified.

GeorgeRRMartinZNation

No, I don’t mean George R. R. Martin! Besides, that was a couple of episodes ago. I mean this guy.

That’s right—me!

So how’d that happen?Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

While trying to distract yourself from yesterday’s heartbreak, did you happen to catch last night’s Z Nation? If so, in the Season 2, Episode 10 episode titled “We Were Nowhere Near the Grand Canyon,” you’d have seen one of my favorite writers zombified.

GeorgeRRMartinZNation

No, I don’t mean George R. R. Martin! Besides, that was a couple of episodes ago. I mean this guy.

That’s right—me!

So how’d that happen?Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

While trying to distract yourself from yesterday’s heartbreak, did you happen to catch last night’s Z Nation? If so, in the Season 2, Episode 10 episode titled “We Were Nowhere Near the Grand Canyon,” you’d have seen one of my favorite writers zombified.

GeorgeRRMartinZNation

No, I don’t mean George R. R. Martin! Besides, that was a couple of episodes ago. I mean this guy.

That’s right—me!

So how’d that happen?Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

While I was at the World Fantasy Convention in Saratoga Springs, I was asked by dozens of my friends what awesome dining plans I had that weekend, for they know I always do make such plans, taking great care not to waste a meal when traveling. What I told them is what I already told you here —that the peak culinary experience of my trip wouldn’t be at the con, but after, at the eponymous Damon Baehrel.

What makes Damon Baehrel so special is not just its amazing food, but also its close relationship with a specific plot of land, a relationship which I don’t believe is replicated anywhere else in the world, as these words taken from the restaurant’s site prove.

In addition to the cultivated and native ingredients from our Sagecrest Native and Organic Gardens and property, all of the cheeses, cured meats, flours, vinegars, pressed oils, breads and butters (including cow, goat and sheep varieties) are hand prepared by Damon. Chef/Grower Damon partnered with a nearby organic farm long ago to raise these and other livestock, and whole animals have been utilized for the charcuterie and meat courses since day one. East coast seafood is personally selected by Damon for the popular seafood and vegetable courses. Damon also make all of the so-called “pantry” ingredients…including Fresh pressed Grapeseed oil, Sunflower oil, Nut oils. Flours: including Cranberry Bean Flour, Fava Bean Flour, Acorn & Hickory Nut Flour, Spruce & Pine Flour. (just to name a few) as well as over 60 Homemade Vinegars. Hundreds of powders & flours he creates to highlight his original Cuisine, Partridge Berry, Wild Fiddlehead Ostrich Fern, Smoked Cedar Berry, Wild Sorrel, Gem Studded Puffball Mushroom, Dandelion Root, Hickory Bark, etc. are just a few of the many ever changing tastes you will get to experience.

Now that I’ve experienced what turned out to be a seven-hour meal there, I’m being asked, “Well … ?”

And words fail me. Because in trying to explain what it’s like to have the privilege (and yes, that’s what it felt like, a privilege) of eating what Baehrel has dubbed “Native Harvest” cuisine, I feel as if I’m being tasked to describe the indescribable. I’ve been tossing out adjectives, which really explain nothing, and have been tempted to resort to one of the worst cliches of all—”You had to be there.” Which, while for the most part true, is tremendously unsatisfying for both of us.

So let me try to avoid that “You had to be there” cop-out and take you along on my journey as best I can.

It all began on January 7, 2014, when I was reminded by this Eater post that Damon Baehrel, located in Earlton, New York, was within striking distance of the World Fantasy Convention to be held the following year in Saratoga Springs. So on January 17, I shot off an email and hoped for a miracle.

EaterDamonBaehrel

Why would it be considered a miracle to get a reservation at a restaurant more than 22 months before the desired date? Because at the time I began my quest, there was a five-year backlog in place, and on April 1 of that year, just a few months later, Damon Baehrel stopped taking any new requests entirely, as there were already 100,000 reservation requests from 67 countries. Keep in mind that’s table requests, not just the number of diners, and that’s for a restaurant which only handles approximately 12-14 guests per seating, five days each week.

By May of 2015, I was informed that number had increased to 200,000 table requests from more than 80 countries, and with that increase, my hopes diminished. But (to make a long story short) eventually, miraculously, Chef Baehrel was willing to rearrange his schedule and open his restaurant for us the Monday after World Fantasy, on a day when he would normally be closed, a fact which I learned just two weeks prior to our meal.

And so, at around 3:40 p.m. on November 9, I pulled up to the locked gate at the mouth of the drive, filled with anticipation. And some justifiable fear as well. For how could anything possibly live up to that kind of hype?

(Spoiler alert: This anything did.)Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman
11 November 2015 @ 06:04 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

How terrible is the bandwidth of my Internet provider?

So terrible that the following video of Sarah Pinsker reading a short story on October 17 at Capclave would have taken me 20+ hours to upload at home, while at the same time choking all other Internet usage.

Which meant I instead waited a month to share it with you, until I was at the World Fantasy Convention hotel where I could use 21st Century Internet to upload the 1.22 Gigabyte file in a tenth of the time as my apparently steam-powered Internet.

Enjoy!

If you want to see more of what Capclave can offer, here are some videos from 2014.

 
 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

This year’s World Fantasy Convention—which you may or may not have attended—ended Sunday. Even if you were among those present in Saratoga Springs, I doubt you were with me for all of the following 14 readings, which I recorded with a Flip mini-camcorder (mostly balanced on my knee), because I hate for history to vanish.

If you’d like to replication my experience, watch the first three (from Friday) one day, the next eight (from Saturday) another day, and the final three (from Sunday) the last.

Enjoy your virtual World Fantasy convention!

Carrie Cuinn

Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I never got around in October to harvesting all the dreams I had in September, so this post gathers two months of dreams which I’d previously shared on Twitter. I was so busy getting a new story written that I didn’t have time to do this before. Also, oddly, I think I had fewer dreams remembered the past two months that usual. Too much travel affecting my sleep, I guess.

In any case, let’s see whether these dreams gain any additional meaning from being gathered together this way, shall we? Last month, I dreamed of Stan Lee, Jay Lake, Robert Redford, Robert De Niro, John F. Kennedy, and more … and who knows? Maybe even you!

October 2015

I dreamt I chatted with 1960s’ Stan Lee, explaining to him the economics of kids buying comics. He was wondering how many we could afford. Oct 30

I dreamt I saw an ant inside carrying a tiny ant egg, so I smooshed it. Then I saw many, many others doing the same. So I smooshed them ALL. Oct 30

I dreamt that, at a mall, I came upon swing-dancing cosplayers. They were putting on a show to celebrate some (unknown) patriotic holiday. Oct 25

I dreamt my wife and son and I were swimming with sea lions, which was joyful, until we saw one chewing on a duck, which turned my stomach. Oct 25

I dreamt @BrianKeene was writing for the Flash TV show, and when I tossed out an idea, he suggested we should collaborate on a script. Oct 25

I dreamt I was sitting with Roz Chast and @RoseFox discussing “What’s the worst that could happen?” We were all being VERY pessimistic! Oct 24

I dreamt I wound up mechanized time bombs in the shape of small birds and set them to circling me and my parents. Woke before they exploded! Oct 24

I dreamt @IreneVartanoff and I were moving into an apartment at the same time the previous occupants were moving out. A confusion of boxes! Oct 22

I dreamt I bumped into @YvonneNavarro and @WestonOchse at a con, and we agreed to meet up on the way home in Annapolis. Why? I have no idea. Oct 22

I dreamt @EllenDatlow asked me from a panel if I’d read a certain book. I lied and said yes, so she pulled me onstage. Where I had to BS. Oct 21Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

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scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

My wife‘s first novel, Temporary Superheroine, a comic book style adventure, was just reviewed by Publishers Weekly, and the verdict was, well … read it for yourself.

IreneVartanoffTemporarySuperheroinePWReview

Considering PW hated, hated, hated my zombie short story collection What Will Come After, it seems to me that by comparison this reviewer is (to switch around a cliché) praising her with faint damns.

After all, considering a PW reviewer felt the authorial voice of the stories in my collection created “a monotony that undermines any excitement,” for Irene to be told that “the work fails to deliver any new insights or ironic commentary” is almost a compliment.

Regardless, there’s no such thing as bad publicity, right?

So why not discover for yourself whether you agree with the reviewer’s judgment of my wife’s insights and commentary by ordering a copy her book right now and reading it for yourself?

And while you’re at it, grab a copy of the sequel, too!

(Ain’t nepotism grand?)

 
 
scottedelman
01 November 2015 @ 09:48 am

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Thanks to Tom Heintjes, I just learned that Roy Crane’s comic strip Buz Sawyer debuted on November 1, 1943 … that is, 72 years ago today …

BuzSawyer110143

Though, as he reminds us, Buz himself didn’t make an appearance until the following day.

BuzSawyer110243

Why am I telling you this?Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Last night, my local Alamo Drafthouse hosted a Dr. Phibes Feast, with an appearance by Vincent Price’s daughter Victoria and a five-course dinner prepared from recipes out of the 50th anniversary edition of Vincent and Mary Price’s cookbook A Treasury of Great Recipes. From the moment I learned of the event, I knew I’d have to be there. After all, if you created a Venn diagram consisting of Food and the Fantastic, for me those two circles would surely come close to a complete overlap.

AbominableDrPhibesFeastMenu

Check out the announced menu above, lacking only the alcoholic pairings accompanying each course, which as those who know me already know, I eschewed.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )